Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Where is Graphic Design?

As my "Collection 100" project is focusing on high-top trainers, a lot of these posts will include designs on shoes...

Interesting Book design - More examples of Paul Johnson's work

'Sailing' - "180-degree pop-up sailing boat inspired by medieval illumination".
'The Quest' - "Is the Princess happy or not? She's not quite sure, Castle with hinged door revealing a pop-up accordion - presented in a handmade interlocking paper case".
'Merman' - inspired by a lonely heart's advert stating "Kind and educated merman seeks mermaid for a lasting relationships, my friends say that I am handsome". It is hand-engineered and assembled and is presented in a paper cover.
'Heaven On Earth' - "A 90-degree pop-up book inspired by devotional prayer-books".
'Goldilocks and the three little pigs' - "A pop-up satyre on the Goldilocks story"
'The Book Chair" - "A small chair, constructed by unfolding a tab into a slot, holds on its seat a tiny book - A chair book"

Interesting Book Design - Paul Johnson

'So Let us Keep this Moment secret to ourselves only'
'Thank You Spirit of Light for the Gift Of Life'

These Two books have been made using several different fabric dyes on industrial watercolour paper and sewed together with hand-dyed cotton thread, each page cut out in a different way.
I find them incredibly aesthetically pleasing... I think this is the desired effect.

Interesting Book Design - 'The Medium is the Message'

The book is based on a quote from Marshal McLuhan... "The Medium is the message" and thiis a pretty straight-forward message. A book on gun crime, in the form of a pistol.
Simple, effective and incredibly clever and well-made.

Interesting Book Design - White Heat

As soon as Amber talked to us about interesting book designs, I immediately thought of one of the favourite christmas presents my grandmother gave me as a kid. I remember looking through the pages wondering what would come next.
There were pop-ups, masks to pull out and put together, different textures to feel and guess what they were, a mobile to build and points on which you scratch to uncover different smells... even a boardgame complete with a spinner and pieces. Even the cover is padded.

This is an interesting way of getting kids to interact and work in the shape of a diary... makes the learning process a lot more interesting and exciting. I remember reading it and re-reading it... careful not to spoil it in any way.

It was designed by 'White Heat' and I just found it on a design website, apparently other people appreciate what a good bit of simple design it is...

Monday, 21 December 2009

Interesting Book Design - Chip Kidd

Chip Kidd is a designer I've admired for a while now. He designs book covers... and this is his life's work, ironic that he should call it 'Book One'...
The pages of the book are twice the size of the cover, portraying that his life is far more than can be fit into a book of generic design.
The photograph which makes up the cover is simple, but works incredibly well, it's eye catching... making you look straight into another book.

Interesting Book Design - Paul Hekkert

This is Paul Hekkert's book which documents the story of his life throughout college.
The insides of each page are printed yellow with words on the inside, mirrored to create effect.
There are also pictures and prints on the edges of the pages, which are folded in half... leading on to the next part of the story as it goes.

Monday, 23 November 2009

What Is Graphic Design Part 2 - Producing images that effectively communicate a message to an audience

I noticed someone use this image in their 'No News is Good News' brief and found it a really interesting design. This is not the perfect picture of the logo... but it's an incredibly clever image you have to look at more than once to really understand the meaning. Some people see an arm first, some people a pair of legs... but combined brings a sinister image... very crude, but a perfect way of depicting child abuse.

This image is playing with symbols known world-wide. Immediately you know that the symbol standing up depicts a woman... and the one on the floor is a man. You can then tell exactly what this ironic image is showing, a stereotypical view of marriage.
It really interests me how these symbols can be manipulated to form almost any meaning, and the mind will decifer a meaning, without any text whatsoever.

'Droppin' bombs'
This image... once again, even without the use of text, clearly communicates it's message (however crude).

I found this image really clever... It's playing with widely-known symbols by people who use both PC's and Macs. When an image (always irritatingly) cannot be shown due to an error... a small red cross appears somewhere. The designers of this have played with people's irritation with this... and turned it into a photograph, removing the head and replacing it with a red cross... and, where you would expect to see a design on the t-shirt, again. It is immediately recognizable.

I loved this image when i first saw it, it really made me laugh. Once again, it's playing with people world-wide being able to decifer these simple images and relate them to real-life situations. Immediately we can see that whatever is being depicted by the people icons, is forbidden by the red slash through the middle.

'Love Sign'
Once again, an example of a widely known symbol, simply put in a context where you wouldn't usually find it... I think I like the composition of the photograph more than anything, but the heart symbol, a metonym for love has been cleverly put on the sign, in front of a little dirt track into the horizon. A really nice idea, who would'nt want to find love at the end of a sign-posted road. How easy!

'Header' Johnny Vulkan
OK, I don't immediately know what this is trying to depict... "if you go in there, you'll lose your head'? "there is someone with no head in there"? "go in the door and you'll lose your mind"? there are so many different ways to interpret it... I simply liked this image, as it plays with a symbol we know (men's toilet) into something we can't quite get our head around... a simple way of making us think...

'Band Aid - India' campaign
This image is incredibly simple, but also incredibly effective in it's delivery method. The symbol which is clearly the focus-point of the image, is immediately recognizable as the 'peace' sign and it has been created by using platers (or band-aids).... Without reading about it I had a clear idea what the image meant... and what it's use was.

'The World is in Our Hands'
I'm sure lots of people will use this as an example... but I think it's really clever and equally effective. A simple image of blue and green, painted onto a pair of hands... to create a sphere... is immediately recognized by the brain as The Earth. It's incredible.

Again, playing with our decifering of the colours used, this is instantly recognizable as being a metonym for the earth... and warning us that it is fragile, it can break... and it will be disastrous when it does. It is using the same kind of message as the previous image, but using an object which we associate with weakness to show the world... scary in some ways.
It's a really clever use of colour, bold and bright, to add impact to the message.

What Is Graphic Design Part 2 - Interpreting images of the present, past and a range of cultures

What Is Graphic Design Part 2 - The ability to construct a meaning from visual images and type

It is made clear by the text in this image what it is trying to tell us. It's the clever manipulation of text and image which makes the message all the more impactful, the use of a gun, which is pretty controversial, especially when there is so much youth gun crime around, is a really strong image to use. It is aimed at kids, this is clear, a way to make them see that going to school is far more clever than using guns... almost making them feel guilty for throwing away their education.

I know this doesn't use type to explain what it means, but, it is a perfect example of an image, showing it's meaning without having to use type.
A simple line-drawing depicting someone with their head (their mind) in a cage, a caged mind if you will...

I love this image, mainly for its simplicity and impactful message. It is using symbols known world-wide to depict the message that love is more important than money. Using a heart to depict love, and a dollar sign for the money aspect. The use of a bright red adds impact where it is needed, making the eye focus on the heart rather than the dollar sign... where our focus needs to be.

This is an internet advert... a viral campaign... one of those annoying messages which pops up on screen which you promptly close. However, I found this one different, a lot more eye-catching (excuse the pun). It is an advertisement to make us think, one telling us about the fate of whales.
It's cleverly only using the eye, showing us the incredible scale of an actual whale... and saying that it is life-size (highlighted by the different use of colour in the text), again adding impact in saying that we are killing such huge creatures. It is made to make the viewer feel guilt... and hopefully change their ways.

Along with the others, I love the clear message behind this photograph. It is using imagery which is widely known and turning it into a message which makes people smile in turn. It is showing the ripple effect of happiness, hitting the 'happy' ball into balls depicting people. We all know what happens in pool or snooker when you break the triangle... the balls bounce off each other in all directions, using the yellow 'smiley' ball as a metaphor for happiness... and the multi-coloured ball as the people who will be happy as a result.
The focus is definitely on the yellow ball, the colour used to add impact, it is also in the center of the image.

This image is again, really clear in it's message. Using our knowlege of today's economic crisis, and playing with it to show that these television stations are sinking.
The symbols, the logos as we know them, are literally sinking into the sea. A clear metaphor.

By 'Lena'
By Richard 'M'

Monday, 9 November 2009

Monday, 26 October 2009

Untitled - Designer Unknown

This is quite decorative, it has played on the religious saying "Ora et Labora" which means "Pray and Labor" but changed it to 'Flora' which means plant life... this has been visually translated into the pictures of the people and the flowers surrounding the type.